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Quiet Time - 1:
This Body Itself Is The Temple





har mandar eho sareer hai
gyan ratan pargat hoye …
har mandar eho jagat hai …

This body itself is God’s Temple
Within appear all treasures …
The earth too is His Temple …
[GGS: 1346.4]

This body itself is God’s Temple. Not just a temple. The Temple. We’re not tied to or limited by brick and mortar. We have broken away from the shackles of superstition and ritual. 

Of course, a place of worship, every place of worship of any kind, is a good thing. Being part of a congregation reinforces our beliefs and strengths, brings us into the company of the pious and the wise. Instils humility, teaches us to serve and share.

But we are reminded, the simple act of being in a place of worship and reciting scripture is by itself no accomplishment. It is but a crucible in which we learn how to get steeped in spirituality, and learn to behave with our fellow Man.

The earth is His Temple too. Thus, it is not to be misinterpreted as pointing to isolation or seclusion. Join others in worship, but we are to be present in our entirety. Attendance alone, mindless or ritualistic presence, amounts to nought.

Moreover, since each one of us is a walking and breathing Temple, no one is better, no one worse, no one is more, no one is less.  

The real work, the meaningful journey, is within … inside ourselves, each one of us. Alone. Quiet. In peace and serenity. Personal. Internal.  

But it is not meant to nurture selfishness. Anything but.  

My father used to say, what you do inside your head is up to you; no one has to interfere, no one can limit you … if you don’t let them. 

Again, not to be misunderstood as extolling silence or retreat from the world as a tool for salvation, but as a means of detachment while being fully immersed in the sounds and goings-on of the world. Being in the thick of it … and staying free of it.

Hence … both our body and the world is The Temple. Seek knowledge and awareness within oneself. And then apply it to the welfare of all.   

Sunday, January 15, 2017


Conversation about this article

1: Sangat Singh (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), January 15, 2017, 7:25 PM.

The most achingly beautiful elegy on the human form is given by Bhagat Kabir on ang 1159 of SGGS: Iss dehi ka-o simrahi dev” -- “Even the gods long for this human body” I was in a quandary to choose one line but each one was better than the other. Perhaps the message “ab na bhajas bhajas kab bhai / avai ant nab haji-as jai” -- "If you do not meditate now, then when the end comes it will be too late.”

2: Jugraj  (Gurgaon, India), January 15, 2017, 11:42 PM.

Very thought provoking.

3: Bibek Singh (India), January 16, 2017, 7:05 AM.

Gurbani on pages 180, 480 and 795 may help in understanding that the word ‘temple’ is tightly coupled with mind and intellect, rather than just a physical structure or space.

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This Body Itself Is The Temple"

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